Mannose Receptor Protein plays an important role in Development of Crescentic Glomerulonephritis

Crescentic glomerulonephritis is a kidney disease which generally results in acute and chronic kidney conditions. It soon progresses to kidney failure and the patient if left untreated may eventually die. Even the patients who receive timely treatment progress to end stage kidney disease requiring regular dialysis and kidney transplant at times. Crescentic glomerulonephritis is caused due to the infiltration of the glomeruli by macrophages. Glomerular injury is also caused by proliferation of resident glomerular cells, particularly the mesangial cells. These cells play an important role in directing the outcome of nephrotoxic nephritis. In a research carried out by scientists from Hammersmith Hospital, United Kingdom, and published in a recent issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigations, the researchers have found out that mannose receptor protein, when present, interacts with Fc receptors present on the mesangial cells, and is critical for the development of crescentic glomerulonephritis.

The mannose receptor has been described by the researchers as one of the prototype markers of alternatively activated macrophages. It is a lectin scavenger receptor and is responsible for clearance of endogenous molecules produced during inflammation. It is also known to bind with several auto-antigens. Binding with the mannose receptor may enhance the Fc mediated responses of the mesangial cells.

During their experiment carried out on laboratory mice, the researchers have found that the mice which were deficient in mannose receptor were protected from crescentic glomerulonephritis although they exhibited similar antibody and T cell responses. Mannose receptor deficient mice showed altered Fc mediated responses when they interacted with the mesangial cells. They, in fact, exhibited anti-inflammatory macrophage generation after interacting with the mesangial cells. This protection against the mesangial cells was associated with reduced kidney damage.

According to the researchers, the current forms of therapies available against crescentic glomerulonephritis show multiple side effects as a result of immune suppression. However, therapies targeting mannose receptor protein may protect against the progression of crescentic glomerulonephritis without these side effects.

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Date: 
Wednesday, June 27, 2012
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